Mavs From the Past: Evan Eschmeyer

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Evan Eschmeyer played in the NBA for a couple of years, unfortunately, injuries cut his career short, but he did achieve a dream that many basketball fans have, he made it into the NBA.

College Years

Eschmeyer attended Northwestern University for college. In his first year on the school’s basketball team, he averaged 9.0 points per game (PPG), 6.6 rebounds per game (RPG), 0.6 assists per game (APG), 0.8 steals per game (SPG), and 1.0 block per game (BPG). He started in 25 out of the team’s 27 games. The Wildcats went 2-16 in conference play, finished last in the Big Ten conference, and missed out on the NCAA tournament. They finished off the season 7-20.

The following season Eschmeyer improved his numbers as he put up 14.1 PPG, 8.1 RPG, 1.6 APG, 1.0 SPG, and 1.2 BPG while starting in 16 of the 29 games played. The team again finished last in the conference, going 2-16 again, and missing out on the NCAA tournament. They finished with the same amount of wins as the previous year, going 7-22 for the season.

Eschmeyer’s junior year was the best season in his basketball career. He put up 21.7 PPG, 10.7 RPG, 2.5 APG, 0.7 SPG, and 0.9 BPG while starting in all 27 games for the season. The Wildcats finished conference play 3-13, ninth in the conference, and missed out on the NCAA tournament for a third consecutive time. The team continued to improve their season-by-season finish, this time finishing with a 10-17 record.

In Eschmeyer’s senior year he put up 19.6 PPG, 10.1 RPG, 2.6 APG, 0.8 SPG, and 1.7 BPG while starting in all 29 games for the season. The team finished conference play with a 6-10 record, seventh in the conference, and missed out on the NCAA tournament again. The team never qualified for the NCAA tournament during Eschmeyer’s time at the school. In Eschmeyer’s final year on the team, they finished with a winning record of 15-14, their only winning record while he was there. In his final year on the team, he was named a consensus second-team All-American.

Welcome to the NBA

Eschmeyer was drafted 34th overall by the New Jersey Nets in the 1999 NBA Draft. Injuries hampered his NBA career.

In his first NBA season, he predominantly came off the bench, starting in only five out of the 35 games he played in. He managed to put up 2.9 PPG, 3.5 RPG, 0.7 APG, 0.3 SPG, and 0.7 BPG for the season. The Nets went 31-51 and finished 12th in the Eastern Conference, completely missing out on the playoffs.

The following year was Eschmeyer’s best year when it came to games played and starts. He played in 74 games, the most in his career, while starting in 51 of them, the most starts in his career. Getting more opportunities as a starter in his second year he averaged 3.4 PPG, 4.9 RPG, 0.5 APG, 0.6 SPG, and 0.8 BPG. The Nets had another down year as they again finished 12th in the East with a 26-56 record.

Dallas Years

During the 2001 offseason, Eschmeyer signed as a free agent with the Dallas Mavericks. His injury problems also followed him to Dallas.

In Eschmeyer’s first season in Dallas, he started in six out of the 31 games he played, going back to a bench role. He averaged 2.0 PPG, 3.2 RPG, 0.3 APG, 0.3 SPG, and 0.3 BPG for the season. The Mavericks went 57-25 and finished fifth in the Western Conference. The Mavs swept the Minnesota Timberwolves in three games. They then lost in the following round to the Sacramento Kings in five games. Eschmeyer participated in three of the playoff games, where he averaged 0.7 RPG, 0.3 APG, and 0.3 BPG while playing a little bit over two minutes per game. Injuries hampered most of his season.

Injuries again destroyed Eschmeyer’s season as he only played in 17 regular season games and started in three of them. His final season would be his worst one as he only averaged 1.0 PPG, 1.7 RPG, 0.4 APG, 0.6 SPG, and 0.4 BPG. The team on the other hand had a great season, going 60-22 and finishing third in the West. In the first round of the playoffs, they defeated the Portland Trailblazers in seven games. They then went on to defeat the Kings in seven games. The Mavs’ luck would run out in the Western Conference Finals as they lost in six games to their rivals, the San Antonio Spurs. Eschmeyer took part in five of the playoff games, averaging 1.2 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.4 APG, 0.6 SPG, and 0.2 BPG.

During the 2003 offseason, he was traded to the Golden State Warriors where he spent a season with the team but never played a game. The following offseason, he was traded back to the Mavs and retired from basketball.

Eschmeyer had four knee surgeries in the span of five years, which limited his playing time and ability, and caused him to retire due to potential long-term mobility problems.

Life After the NBA

Echmeyer has a wife, Kristina, and three kids.

He was part of Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign. 

He worked at an environmental law firm before transitioning to a private investor. He is also a member of Net Impact, a nonprofit membership organization that uses business skills to support social and environmental causes.

Legacy

Eschmeyer’s biggest impact was off the court as he helped others in various forms of ways. Even though his NBA career isn’t a memorable one, due to the mountain of injuries he sustained, he still lived out many people’s dreams and played in the NBA.



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